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Teach kids to operate like entrepreneurs

Universities have just about started (they need their break).  Education is a big of bugbear of mine. I have written regularly on how our education system is NOT preparing my children and your children for the future.

Ken, Seth and Charles

I’m largely informed by Ken Robinson. (Watch him on In his view, we are not preparing our kids for the new world. Success in the new world requires imagination and innovation, not commodity academics.Ken thinks that the key competency of the future will be creativity. In the new world, we will need talent that can deal with complexity, have entrepreneurial skills, be technological literate and have global acumen. Does our education system deliver that? No it does not. Seth Godin in Stop Stealing Dreams jumps on the same bandwagon. Charles Handy, our Irish management visionary, has been on it longer than Ken.


I have seen it in action myself in my work with universities. The general level of entrepreneurship education is very poor. Most academics teaching the subject have NEVER run a business. And as you and I know, you have to have been there to understand. For example, selling is not part of entrepreneurship courses (no academic merit). Talk about ‘a boat without a paddle’.

So you have to take control.

  • Watch Ken.
  • Read Poke the Box by Seth Godin.
  • Get your kids into youth entrepreneurship programmes.
  • Get them an apprenticeship in a start-up.
  • Get them to sell something.
  • Start giving guest lectures in schools and universities about your experience as an entrepreneur.
  • Be a role model.

Make sure your kids follow their passion. It will be their only distinctive feature in a commoditised labour market. I firmly believe that the only way to survive and be successful in what will be a very different (labour (I put that in brackets on purpose)) market in the future, is for your kids to operate like entrepreneurs. Different, passionate, happy and in control of their own destiny.

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3 Responses to Teach kids to operate like entrepreneurs

  1. John McEvoy October 8, 2012 at 6:12 pm #

    The future is enterprise. Our kids need to be equipped with the skills which will help them to become both successful and responsible adults. Skills such as entrepreneurship, critical thinking, money management and innovation are fundamental. BizWorld Ireland are bringing these skills to children in the 5th and 6th class of primary school all around Dublin.Check out

  2. Catherine Herron October 21, 2012 at 7:37 pm #

    Spoke like a true entrepreneur! 🙂

  3. tmaas October 23, 2012 at 10:46 am #

    bollox. to guarantee success in this world you need to learn how to conform, stroke egos and bend over.

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